Rising Rate Response - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Rising Rate Response

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The response to stop - or at least delay - rising flood insurance rates is in motion.

Senators John Hoeven and Heidi Heitkamp and Representative Kevin Cramer are all backing legislation that would hold off major rate increases for about four years.

Kelli Volk tells us how that could also buy time for local and state efforts to keep the cost of flood insurance down in the long term.

The implementation of the Biggert-Waters Act is a decision that was made on Capitol Hill

However, North Dakota leaders and local officials have developed ideas that would protect North Dakotans from rate increases.

Several options have been proposed.

On the national level ----

Backed by all of North Dakota's congressional delegation, congress is looking at separate policy.

The Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act could delay the increasing cost of flood insurance by about four years.

On the state level ----

State Representative Scott Louser is pursuing a state run flood insurance policy that will be introduced to the State Legislature in 2015.

4544 (Rep. Scott Louser, (R) ND State Legislator) "It's fully my intention to have this be a bill introduced and not have it be a study. I want to try to do the study informally the year leading up to it because this is urgent. If we get a four year extension, we can't wait four years to have a bill passed in North Dakota, if this is something we want to do. It's fully my intention to have this be a bill that's passed and not just have it be a start."

On the city level ----

Minot can register for the Community Rating System through FEMA which would give points to a community for flood prevention.

There is no direct cost to the city.

Finance Director Cindy Hemphill is working on registration but the amount of savings is unclear now.

There are many pieces that need to come together before the rising rates are set in stone.

If passed, the Homeowner Flood insurance Affordability Act will extend the timeline to get those pieces in place.

In Minot, Kelli Volk, KX News.

Scott Louser is also a local representative of the National Association of Realtors and serves on the Presidential Advisory Committee.

He says the uncertainty in flood insurance prices could impact property values across the country.

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